Saturday, September 26, 2015

Book Review - Milan (A Wedding Story) by Simi K. Rao

Title: Milan (A Wedding Story)
Author: Simi k. Rao
Pages: 162
Price: INR 132.00
Publisher: Kando Books


When a daughter turns marriageable age, what should a responsible father do? Easy--wed her to the most suitable boy who comes knocking on the door. Jai Bharadwaj, Mili's father and owner of The Serenity Tea Estate in the idyllic Nilgiris would've probably liked to do the same, but being who he was, he had to ask her first. What would she say?


‘Milan (A Wedding Story)’ by Simi K. Rao is fun to read, light and easy to understand: a chic lit through and through.  Reading it reminded me of all the romances I used to guzzle down as a teenager. Back then I didn’t worry about the writer; I just picked up any book printed by Mills and Boon. The books used to be lighthearted romances, full of human side of things and with an almost linear story-line involving a girl and a boy who fell irrevocably in love and had a happily-ever-after. There was usually a lot of information about the food, clothing and different destinations. ’Milan’ fits into that category very snugly.
The story opens with Mili Bharadwaj, the heroine, who’s back home after completing her graduation in music and has no idea about the future that awaits her. Enters Ahaan Kapoor, the hero, with a marriage proposal that the family is only too happy to accept. Mili has certain reservations initially since he’s the same guy she used to bicker with during their schooldays. Of course, he’s no longer the nerd he used to be. He’s all suave and irresistible with a prestigious job. Unbeknownst to Mili, he has harbored a crush for her for as long as he can remember. She doesn’t take long to fall head over heels for him either. Then starts their sugary courtship up until they get married and beyond.
‘Milan’ follows the old school but routine charm of a Bollywood romance seen one too many times. Indian marriages are known to be over-the-top, sometimes outlandish and generally maddening. Ms Rao has given a walk-through of this experience in detail. The last few pages give it a ‘guidebook’ feel. She has even included few recipes! Clearly it’s for the benefit of the overseas reader, who I presume are her target audience.
After reading cover to cover I felt that the only drawback is that the story is sweet to a fault. The sweetness almost choked me. Another fact that irked me is the use of ‘adjectives.’ They adorn almost every other sentence. That said, the book is everything a person seeks when in need of a diversion from boring journeys or idle thoughts.

About the Author

Simi K. Rao was born and grew up in both northern and southern India before relocating to the U.S., where she has lived for several years. She is the author of multicultural contemporary romantic fiction.
The inspiration for her books and other creative projects comes from her own experience with cross-cultural traditions, lifestyles and familial relationships, as well as stories and anecdotes collected from friends, family and acquaintances.
Rao enjoys exploring the dynamics of contemporary American culture blended with Indian customs and heritage to reflect the challenges and opportunities many Indian-American women face in real life.
Much of Rao's down time is devoted to creative pursuits, including writing fiction, poetry and photography. She is an avid traveler and has visited many locations around the world.
A practicing physician, Rao lives in Denver with her family. Her published works include Inconvenient Relations and The Accidental Wife. She is currently at work on her next release.

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